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Veterans express opinions on COVID-19 vaccine process at Malcom Randall VA Medical Center

Published: Jan. 20, 2021 at 7:52 AM EST
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - COVID-19 vaccinations at the Malcom Randall VA Medical Center have smoothed out after a bumpy start.

Many people waiting in line on Monday waited for hours in their car, while the wait was an average of 10 minutes on Tuesday.

Organizers said they solved this by bringing in additional vaccinators, streamlining the registration process, and reserving a larger space for veterans being observed after vaccinations.

Veterans TV20 spoke with have mixed reviews about the whole vaccination process.

Navy Veteran William Rennecker was turned away once he got to the front because he received a shingles vaccine within the last 14 days.

“The process is very confusing... terribly inconvenient and confusing,” said Rennecker. “The VA system is totally confused understandably because of roll out.”

Air Force Veteran Jerry Wouters had a different opinion. He said his experience was very smooth.

“It’s been wonderful we’re very fortunate to have this here,” said Wouters. “The people are nice it’s the way to go. I encourage everyone to come and get a vaccine.”

On Monday Kathleen Johnson waited in line with her husband to get his vaccine. She said she waited over six hours, but it was worth it.

“It was nerve-racking waiting on the street in your car but once we got closer to when they gave to your actual injections it went very smoothly and very fast,” said Johnson. “It’s a wonderful feeling that he’s halfway there towards being protected.”

Additional dates based on the last digit of Veteran social security number (SSN) were added:

SSN ending in 6 or 7 Wednesday, January 20, 2021

SSN ending in 8 or 9 Thursday, January 21, 2021

SSN ending in 0 or 1 Friday, January 22, 2021

SSN ending in 2 or 3 Saturday, January 23, 2021

SSN ending in 4 or 5 Monday, January 25, 2021

More dates are expected to be released soon.

For more information on eligibility requirements click here.

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